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Welcome to the UN training page

GeoForAll is supporting UN in their migration to geospatial open source applications. In this page we list the training material available for some products that UN will use. Please add your training material here, putting also the reference to all data used in such a way that everybody in using your material can be autonomous.


  • Official manual + training manual: http://docs.qgis.org - Point of contact: QGIS Project Steering Committee
  • FOSS4G GeoAcademy Curriculum - 35 hands-on labs written primarily for QGIS with some cross over with GRASS and Inkscape. Labs are aligned to the Geospatial Technology Competency Model. Development was sponsored by a Department of Labor Grant and is released under Creative Commons Attribute 3.0 Unported license. All labs currently written for QGIS 2.8, but we are about to release labs for QGIS 2.14. In addition to labs, lecture material is also developed and being uploaded. All lab instructions and data are available online on our lab website.

Add here: short description (at most 5 lines), URL, Lab name, mailing address of the point of contact


gvSIG is a powerful, user-friendly and interoperable GIS. It is easy to work in a variety of formats, vector and raster files, databases and remote services. There are always available all kinds of tools to analyze and manage geographic information.

gvSIG Desktop is designed to be an easily extensible solution, allowing thus continually improving the software application and developing tailor made solutions. It is open source software, GNU / GPL license, this makes its free use, distribution, study and improvement. gvSIG Desktop integrates NASA World Wind, so it allows to work with 3D Views.

gvSIG Online is an Open Source solution for Spatial Data Infrastructures. It is an integral platform for the Spatial Data Infrastructure (SDI) implementation, 100% open source software. A fast and powerful solution for start up the infrastructure necessary to manage spatial data in an organization in an efficient way.


Geographic Resources Analysis Support System, commonly referred to as GRASS GIS, is a Geographic Information System (GIS) used for data management, image processing, graphics production, spatial modelling, and visualization of many types of data. URL: https://grass.osgeo.org

  • NCSU Geospatial Analysis and Modeling course - 13 hands-on labs exercises used at North Carolina State University for teaching geospatial analysis and modeling with focus on terrain analysis, continuous surfaces, interpolation, geomorphometry, hydrology and erosion. We tested the exercises with GRASS GIS 7.0 and we update the material with every new release and academic semester. The material is released under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International license (CC BY-SA 4.0) and the material is developed openly. The course also includes software-independent lectures which are available online as recorded videos and presentations slides.
  • Workshop on urban growth modeling with FUTURES - A day long tutorial on GRASS GIS and urban growth modeling using the FUTURES model tested with GRASS GIS 7.0. The material is dual licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International license (CC BY-SA 4.0) and GNU Free Documentation License 1.2.


GeoServer is an open source server for sharing geospatial data. Designed for interoperability, it publishes data from any major spatial data source using open standards.


OpenLayers is a high-performance, feature-packed library for all your mapping needs.


Add here: short description (at most 5 lines), URL, Lab name, mailing address of the point of contact


PostGIS is a spatial database extender for PostgreSQL object-relational database. It adds support for geographic objects allowing location queries to be run in SQL.

  • University of Colorado Denver FOSS4G Lab: CU Denver FOSS4G Lab
    • PostgreSQL-PostGIS Tutorial Series Series of 7 tutorials covering the basics of PostGIS for spatial data handling and analysis.
    • Link to material: PostgreSQL-PostGIS Tutorials
    • Point of Contact: Rafael Moreno - Rafael.Moreno@ucdenver.edu


GeoGig is an open source tool that draws inspiration from Git, but adapts its core concepts to handle distributed versioning of geospatial data.


GeoNode is a web-based application and platform for developing geospatial information systems (GIS) and for deploying spatial data infrastructures (SDI).


  • rasdaman
    • Big Geo Data Lab - Spatio-temporal sensor, image, simulation, and statistics data of unlimited size are served rapidly by rasdaman ("raster data manager"). As a multiparallel, distributed analytics engine, rasdaman achieves unparalleled service flexibility, scalability, and performance. Being OGC WCPS and WCS Core Reference Implementation, rasdaman enables access, subsetting, and processing on the fly using open standards interfaces. The WCS suite is a central cornerstone for SDIs: a large, growing number of open-source and proprietary tools supports it (MapServer, GeoServer, OpenLayers, QGIS, ESRI ArcGIS, ...) and the OGC standards are under adoption by ISO (as forthcoming 19123-2) and INSPIRE ("Coverage Download Service"). Significant training material is available already, and is being augmented continuously:
    • Link to material: OGC Big Geo Data standards and rasdaman workshops | hands-on lab on Big Data Standards | Big Earth Data (53min TV documentary)
    • Point of Contact: Peter Baumann - baumann@rasdaman.com


OSGeo-Live contains 50 of the best geospatial applications, pre-installed with datasets, along with project overviews and 10 to 15 minute quickstarts for each application and ~ 45 minute presentation of them all. The documentation provides an excellent high level overview of the breadth of geospatial open source applications. It is also used as a plaform for many open source geospatial workshops.

Bringing GEOSS services into practice

The "Bringing GEOSS services into practice" workshop aims at teaching how to configure, use and deploy a set of open source software (PostGIS, GeoServer, GeoNetwork, PyWPS, QGIS) to set up a spatial data infrastructure (SDI). Trainees will learn how to publish and share data and metadata using OGC and ISO standards and how to register services into the Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS).

Website: http://www.geossintopractice.org

Lab: GeoForAll - ISE, University of Geneva: http://www.unige.ch/tigers/fr/autres-reseaux/geoforall/

Contact: Gregory Giuliani <gregory.giuliani AT unige.ch>


GeoMOOSE is a Web Client JavaScript Framework for displaying distributed cartographic data. GeoMOOSE has a number of strengths including modularity, configurability, and delivers a number of core functionalities in its packages. GeoMOOSE is also very light weight for servers making it easy to handle a large number of users, with a large number of layers, and a large number of services without stressing a server.

The GeoMOOSE core is written using JavaScript and HTML. It is entirely possible to run GeoMOOSE with nothing more than a basic web server (Nginx, Apache, IIS). But besides the basic client core, GeoMOOSE also comes prepackaged with a number of built in services written in PHP. These services add the ability to perform drill-down identify operations, selection operations, and search data sets. If you have existing scripts that perform similar functions, GeoMOOSE can be tuned to work with those services, no matter which language they were written in.


GET-IT - Geoinformation Enabling ToolkIT starterkit, supports researchers and professional in the creation of autonomous, distributed nodes of a Spatial Data Infrastructure and uploading research results in the form of maps/observations (and related metadata). GET-It supports domain researchers and professional in the creation of OGC standard services like WMS, WFS, WCS, CSW, and SOS. GET-It is based on GeoNode, contains pyCSW, 52° North SOS Server, Geoserver, PostgreSQL, PostGIS, OpenLayers and also contains EDI, a general purpose, customizable, template-driven metadata editor. The suite is the first open-source collaborative effort toward the integration of traditional geographic information with observational data.

Open Source Geospatial Notebooks

OSGeo-Notebooks - Development of interactive educational material in the form of geospatial notebooks based on the Jupyter project. This project is in active development, do not hesitate to contact me If interested in the integration of existing educational materials in the form of interactive notebooks.

Developing Training Material

I'd like to suggest that the second step in generating training material (after sourcing existing material) is to define a template and development process for UN Training material. The following list is based on what we have learned from building OSGeo-Live training material.


  • Structural Guidelines: What headings should be included. Should pictures be included, size of pictures, quality of pictures.
  • Writing guidelines: What voice to use, the level of detail to go into.
  • Translation guidelines: How should the documents be structured to allow easy translation? How do you know if a translation is up to date?
  • Storage guidelines: Should it be stored in git?
  • Maintenance guidelines: How often are the docs expected to be updated. How do you write documents such that they are timeless? How can people report errors or improvements in documentation? What is the plan for updating the documentation when an application is updated. How is this resourced.
  • License guidelines: What license should material be published under?
  • Target Audience: What level is the target audience.
  • Flow between courses: Assuming students will do multiple courses, how to you avoid overlap between courses? What are prerequisites or assumed knowledge before attempting a course. How will material trace back to a qualification, learning goals? This leads to setting exams based on learning goals and material contents.
  • Editorial control: Assuming you crowd source some material, will you have an editor on staff to ensure quality is maintained and guidelines are followed.
  • Distribution format: How is documentation, sample data, and software to be distributed to the classroom? Note, classroom might be a MOOC run from someone's home. OSGeo-Live might be one way? Setting up on a cloud based virtual machine that people can log into is another.

Once the above has been defined, it will facilitate the OSGeo Community to maintain this documentation very efficiently at a high level of quality.

- Cameron Shorter, one of the OSGeo-Live coordinators